Skip to main content

Full text of "The Cambridge Natural History"

See other formats


AMERICAN  TAPIRS

Central America, and in the Malay Peninsula  and  the islai
Java and Sumatra,      This animal  is   in  many respects  the
ancient  of existing  forms  referable   to   the   Perissodactyle
It has four toes on the front-feet, though, only three on the

feet.      The   number   of teeth   is 42---nearly the   typical  Et

ian number. The Tapirs are always moderately-sized an
entirely covered -with hair, and usually of a brownish -
colour. The Malayan Tapir is, however, banded broadly

-white---a   single band;   the young  of  the   Tapir  is spotted

striped with white.      The nose and  upper   lip  conjoined  are

Fia. 128.—American Tapir.     Tapirus t&rr&stris.     x^.
duced into   a   short trunk, precisely comparable with that <
Elephant.     As in the Rhinoceros---and in this both contras
the other existing Perissodactyle genus JSgwus---the tempora
is   not   separated  from  the  orbit  by bone.      Of   existing
there  are at any rate T. te-rvestris?- T. voulini (the ** Tapir "
ague "   of Cuvier),   T. dowi   and  T. 'bairdi   in  America   (tb
two   being   sometimes   separated   into   a  distinct  genus,  M
gfLCLfhiuSt on account of the prolongation of the ossified meseth
and   T. indicus in the  East.      The  tapir, probably T, terres
described   by   IBuffbn   as   " a   dull   and  gloomy   animal."
certainly  mainly  nocturnajj.  in habit.      The  name   terrestr
given by Linnaeus, who placed  it  in  the   same   genus  as -
1 37, t&ucogenifs and 37. ecuadorensis are probably not distinct, tne latt<
in reality 2*. terrestris, the former T.